Q&A: The future of HIV vaccines

Despite the slew of failures in the past, the most recent $105 million HIV vaccine study among 16,000 Thai volunteers is the first to show any (albeit modest) success. With this first sign of promise in HIV vaccine research, linkurl:Norman Letvin,;http://www.hms.harvard.edu/dms/immunology/fac/Letvin.html professor of Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, who was not involved in the Thailand trial, weighs in on the topic in an opinion piece published linkurl:

Victoria Stern
Nov 29, 2009
Despite the slew of failures in the past, the most recent $105 million HIV vaccine study among 16,000 Thai volunteers is the first to show any (albeit modest) success. With this first sign of promise in HIV vaccine research, linkurl:Norman Letvin,;http://www.hms.harvard.edu/dms/immunology/fac/Letvin.html professor of Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, who was not involved in the Thailand trial, weighs in on the topic in an opinion piece published linkurl:online this week in Science;http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/326/5957/1196 .
Norman Letvin
Image: Harvard Medical School
Letvin took time to chat with The Scientist about the new sense of optimism in the field, why statistical significance is not the key issue here, and how, in some groups, the vaccine appeared significantly more effective than others. The Scientist: After the recent HIV vaccine trial in Thailand, what is the mood in the field? Norman Letvin: The vaccine trial has clearly energized researchers in the...
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